Reviews of Terrace Bay
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Completely Out of the Beaten Path
The drive towards Terrace Bay feels like you are on the moon. It is a very unusual landscape with it's particular charms. Staff was friendly and the rooms have a lovely view of the ocean. Dinner was good although it was uncomfortable to have smokers in the same room.
Unfortunately, when we walked into the bathroom we noticed that the outside of the toilet was stained with stool. It was extremely unpleasant and disgusting! We informed the staff and they handled the matter efficiently switching to another room. They were very apologetic and seemed to have call many staff members who came to inspect the room.
Terrace Bay is a genuine outpost
Given that every serious visitor to Namibia should drive up the Skeleton Coast at least once, Terrace Bay is the only option for overnight stops. This is an interesting camp in an isolated, coastal location. The staff were extremely friendly and helpful. Whilst the chalets and dining room are not luxurious they are perfectly adequate- and a definite improvement from when we visited in 2003. The food was fine.
A word of caution- the last 50kms of the road to Terrace Bay are not very good with several stretches of soft sand; definitely not suitable for ordinary cars. We managed, just, in our 2x4 Nissan X-Trail but a 4x4 vehicle should be considered. However a great experience and not to be missed. The drive along the deserted road north from Cape Cross with the sea on one side and the dunes on the other feels like a real adventure.
Terrace Bay review
After a long drive from Swakopmunc, staff did everything they could to make our one stay comfortable at this remote camp. Mended our first puncture and enjoyed watching the local women fishingRead more about the whole trip
Terrace Bay review
Although the staff were friendly & concerned at making one as comfortable as possible, the amenities were- I am sorry to say- very close to appalling. The rooms reminded me of an old Second World War Army Camp I spent ten days at in the Combined Cadet Force when at school. Indeed, if anythig, the Army Camp was more comfortable in that during the one night (thank God!) of our stay at Terrace Bay there developed a leak from the ceiling in the bathroom causing it to become awash & dangerously slippery.
This situation somewhat exascerbated a bout of D&V which Carol suffered during the night there when she seems to have had food poisoning although my having eaten the same food caused me no apparent harm!
Unless one is keen on fishing (which judging by reports declined) I can see no particular advantage in venturing this far up the Skeleton Coast.
Terrace Bay review
If you want to drive the entire Skeleton Coast, Terrace Bay is the only place to stay aside from camping. The facilities are a bit dated, but adequate.
The receptionist was very pleasant and the service overall was fine.
lovely place, terrible journey
Under no circumstances should this trip (after the park entrance) be attempted in a car as even 4WD vehicles get in to difficulties frequently.
Make sure any future gusts are aware the the Ugab river checkpoint closes at 15.00. After that you will simply be turned away and we just made it in with minutes to spare as we were expecting the gate to be open until 17.00. This info is in the guidebook but as it is such an early closure it should be on the client information sent out by EA.
The lodge itself was great, very friendly and no need to worry about inventories or key deposits.
Expert Africa comments
The drive from Swakopmund to Terrace Bay is very long: about 340km. We advise that it’s a good six-hour drive. We usually advise a 4WD during the rainy season and like these travellers, some will prefer one during the dry season. We’ve driven this trip ourselves, several times in recent years, in 2WD saloon cars.
This comment on timings is a very pertinent one; we’d always advise our travellers to start off early in the morning, and reach the Ugab River well before the gate there closes at 15:00. This is included in the guide book, but from now on we’ll further highlight this in a letter that we send out before such a trip.
Terrace Bay is basic and has a time warp quality but that said the rooms were extremely comfortable and we had everything we needed.
Once again we were at the mercy of the wind and sand storms, made me so happy I had never got wrecked on the Skeleton Coast. But I would not have missed going to Terrace Bay, I think everyone should go there once at least.
A classic road trip
We were so glad to have done this drive, from the sights (and smells) of Cape Cross seal colony and the coastal wrecks to the subtly beautiful gravel plains of ever-changing colours further north.
Of course, the Terrace Bay chalets are dated and basic but everything worked and the duvets were lovely - we had the best night's sleep of the whole trip here. It was a shame there were so few other guests - only three other couples - so the restaurant lacked a bit of atmosphere. Food good though and a breakfast selection that would have fed ten times the number.
The following morning we did the short waterfall walk recommended by one of the staff - just park by the old generator shed as you cross the Uniab river and walk seawards for about 1 km . Very easy and we got a good sighting of a brown hyena at quite close quarters.
Terrace Bay review
Loved it for what it is and where it is. You feel like you're at the end of the world and then you come across this old mining camp converted into a holiday 'resort'. We had refurbished rooms which had very comfortable beds - we especially liked the bathroom door - a stripy bit of material pegged onto a fishing line!! Fridge and coffee / tea in the rooms were very welcome.
The staff were great - happy, smiling and pleased to spend some time chatting to us about their lifestyles which involve weeks living at Terrace Bay away from families unless they bring them with them (there is a small school etc for children). Helensmith deserves a special thanks for her smiles. The manager was also very friendly and proud of what they have achieved in upgrading some of the rooms.
Don't expect any luxury but enjoy the whole experience - great fun! Annoyed at ourselves for forgetting to write on the dining room wall to leave our message amid the many that are there - lots to read over breakfast!
Comfortable down to earth place
We arrived at Terrace Bay after driving through a sandstorm so it was a very welcome sight. Staff friendly and helpful. Nice to stay somewhere less touristy all other guests, were locals visiting for the fishing.
Rooms basic but comfortable, very good shower with plenty of hot water.
Had a good night there. Well worth the drive up the Coast.